My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is one of the books I read to help with selecting next year’s Gateway Award nominees. I did really enjoy it. Didn’t think I would, again, like many of the titles on the list this year, it is not my normal type of book. But I really liked the story, and got involved with the characters. At first I was irritated with the main character, Pancho, as he just didn’t want to connect with anyone. Just pushed everyone away in his search for vengeance for his sister’s death. I totally understood though, his need for vengeance. I can feel in the same situation that I would probably think the same way. I liked the D.Q. character, and again, I can see feeling the same way he did about his sickness and how he wanted to deal with it. I did feel it was a bit predictable with how the whole relationship with Marisol turned out. Obviously it wasn’t a Nicholas Sparks type of book where she would fall in love with the terminally ill patient. But once it said something about how she would feel about Pancho, I knew at some point she would tell D.Q., and he would be upset, which he was. But I do like how he realized that was wrong, and how he came around to understand it. Overall, I think it would be a good read for kids on all sides. Even the way the vengeance portion turns out was a good, realistic seeming way, with a bit of a lesson in it.